Friday, May 13, 2005

Nothing to gain from taking Iran to UN, says Blix

Former director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Hans Blix, expressed doubts if anything will be achieved by taking Iran to the UN if it restarts its fuel cycle program, suggesting it could prove to be counterproductive.

"I am not sure much will be gained from taking to the Security Council, except more escalation and getting into more dangerous situation," Blix said.

"I hope there will be a continuation of negotiations" between the EU and Iran in trying to reach long-term arrangements on its nuclear program, he said, believing that it was not too late to find an amicable compromise.

Russia: Iran nuclear conversion plan 'legitimate'

Iran's intention to restart sensitive nuclear activities earlier frozen under a deal with the European Union is "legitimate" and will not alter Russia's nuclear cooperation with the Islamic state, a Russian nuclear official said Thursday.

"The fact that Iran has restarted conversion will not have an impact on nuclear cooperation between Russia and Iran," said the official, speaking on condition she not be named.

"This does not threaten international security because this uranium will be used for peaceful ends and under the strict IAEA control," the official said, referring to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Britain, France warn of action if Iran resumes nuclear work

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Thursday he would support referring Iran to the U.N. Security Council if it breaches its nuclear obligations, sending a strong warning as Tehran threatened to resume a program that officials fear could result in an atomic bomb.

In a sign the pressure was having some effect, the head of Iran's nuclear agency — who previously said conversion could begin as soon as Thursday — said the date for resuming the nuclear program was not set and that it could be postponed for a few days.